US 2449548 A
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L. BURNS AUTOMATIC CONTROL SYSTEM FOR HIGH ALTITUDE PRESSURE SUITS Filed Jan 3, 1946 Sept, 21, 1943.
MYHYIQK HENRY L. BUB/V5 Patented Sept. 21, 1948 UN ETE D S TATES PATENT OFFICE 2,449,548 sores/tarts common ystem roe urea ALTITUDE PRESSURE SUITS seam. Burns, Yellow springs, Ohio Application January 3, 1946', Serial No. 6 38302 6 Claims. i (u. ies-1'44) (Granted under the act of March '3, 1883; as
1 Kline invention described herein: maybe man ufactured and used by or for the'Government forgovernmental purposes without payment to me of any royalty thereon.
invention. relates to an automatic pres: sure-controlling system ifo'r pressure suits'for use imoperating aircraft at highaltitudes. t
:In operating aircraft at high -altitudes such as altitudes exceeding 10,000 feet, it is essential that the aviatorbe supplied with oxygen fromasource of supply carried by the aircraft as the atmosphere "does not =cont'ain sufficient oxygen to supply thewhmnan'n'eed. In operation of aircraft at higher altitudes than 30,000 feet, it is also necessary to providethexbody oi the aviator with additional pressure as the 'atmosphericipressure decreases; One method of supplying this additionai oxygen and pressure is by the use of pressure suits. The pressure suitno-w use must bexmanually' regulated to' maintain the desired pressure as the aircraft reaches varyinglevels of altitude necessitating constant Vigilance on the part of the-aviator to :avoid the physical reaction resulting from inadequate oxygen and pressure and -inmany instances the operation of aircraft, asin combat, requires the undivided attention of the aviator. Itis anobject of this invention to provide a control systemfor high altitude pressure suits that willautom'atically adjust the pressure within the suit to meet the needs of the aviator in accordance with theat mospheric condition of the Various altitudes.
In operatlon of aircraft over great distances, especially in the case of combat aircraft where heavy lo'a'dsof fuel, freight, or armament and bombs'are carried conservation of Weight is of prime importance. Oxygen tanks are "of coh-n side'rable weight and consequentlylit is essential that the supplyof oxygen carried by the aircraft be limited and that the oxygen carried be conserved; espectial ly in the case of combat, aircraft where security requires constant operation at high altitudes. It is an object of-this invention to provide a control system for high altitude pressure suitsthatwill conserve the supply of oxygen carried by the aircraft by a novel means of mixing air fromthe atmosphere with the oxygen gas at those altitudes where dilution of feasible and to regulate the dilution as a function-of altitudes.
It is afurther object of the invention to provi-de a pressure controlledsuit that will permit the wearer to descend rapidly from high; alti tudes as in the case of a parachute jump, withoutlinjury to thewearer from freezing temperaamended April 30, 1928; 370 G. 7517) turesat high altitude and the lack of oxygen and that will automatically prevent the stored oxygen within the suit from escaping during the descent and that will automatically permit the inflow of air when the wearer reaches altitudes having sufficient pressure to permit atmospheric breathing. i
The above and other objectswill be apparent from the following: description and illustrated in the accompanying clravwingswherein:
Fig. -l is a diagrammatic view oi the high-altituclepressure control assembly; i
Fig. 2 is a cross-sectional side view of the prev sure flow and dilutionregulator; and Fig. 3 is a cross-sectional side view of the automatic suit pressurecontrol. v n
Referring now more particularly to the d-rawt ings'; the numeral 1 indicates a conventional high altitude pressure suits Oxygen fromthe conventional container (not s-howna flows in to: the suit througlrthe line :2 passing first intothe pressure flow anddilution regulator 3, more particularly shown int-Fig. 2, thence into-the conventional heater l and into the'suit I. The line 2,which is usually a flexible hose, has the telescoping con nectiensfi; 5 in which are mounted suitable valves (not shown) to seal both connections in theevent the lineis disconnected .as in: the case of a bail- Ou-t. 1
The pressure flow and dilution regu-la-torshown inFig. -2 ha's the inlet part6 which is internally threaded-to receive the external threads-0f the oxygenilinez. Avalve 7, having a booster spring 8 controls'thefiow of oxygen into the pressure chamberil through the part III. A diaphragm H constructed of flexible material such as rube side Wallof the regulator -h0using :3-.- B-ivotally.
mounted onthelever l4 adjacent the regulator housingsiclewall endthereof is-a plunger 15', the opposing "endof said plunger being connected with the valve I so that the long-itudinaj-l movement ofthe diaphragm H willopen -or-closethe valve 'l An "orifice l6 having the nozzle lil -regulates the flow of oxygenirom-the-chamber Qinto the yen-tun l8 andthen'cethrough the port als housing 20 having the intake ports 2|, 2 i
into that part of the line 2 beyond the regulator 3. Beneath the port It is the dilution regulator Seated in the housing 20 is the evacuated bellows 122 in which is mounted the coil spring 23. A valve 24 mounted on the upper end of the bellows 22 controls the flow of air through the port 25. A valve 26 with a light coil spring 21 acts as a check valve preventing the escape of oxygen gas through the port 25. A passageway 28 leading from the line 2 to the suit Iextends through the wall of the regulator housing 3' and through the anchored portion of the diaphragm l I into the area between the diaphragm l l and the upper wall of the regulator housing. The oxygen flows through the port 6 and port l into the pressure chamber 9 and through the port It and venturi l8 and thence through the line 2 into the heater 4 and thence through the line to the suit I. The upper surface of the diaphragm H is subject to the pressure of the suit transmitted through the passageway 28 from the line 2 and a pressure difierential is maintained by the spring l3. The flow of oxygen into the pressure chamber 9 will act against the diaphragm I l and when the aircraft is operating at a preselected altitude such as an altitude of 30,000 feet or greater, the pressure on the diaphragm will be stabilized and the flow of oxygen to the suit will be constant, however, if the pressureof oxygen in the pressure chamber exceeds that required at the predetermined altitude, such as 30,000 feet, the diaphragm will be moved upwardly closing the valve 1 and preventing further flow of oxygen into the pressure chamber until the pressure is again stabilized with the predetermined differential across the diaphragm.
The pressure within the suit is maintained at that required for the predetermined altitude, such as 30,000 feet, by means of the suit pressure reeulator as shown in Fig. 3 of the drawings. The regulator housing 30 is sealed in the wall of the suit i and has the exhaust port 3| controlled by the valve 32 which is operated by the evacuated bellows 33. The bellows 33 is constructed of light metal or similar flexible 'material, having the spring 34 mounted therein. The bellows 33 and the spring 34 are set to expand and move the valve 32 against the port 3| at a predetermined atmospheric pressure, such as the pressure of 30,000 feet of altitude. While operating in altitudes less than the maximum, the atmospheric pressure sensitive bellows 33 will graduallycontract, openin the valve 32, permitting the pressure within the suit to be correspondingly reduced. In the wall of the housing 30 is the port 35 of a relatively large circumference, leading into the pressure suit and the valve 36 consisting of a bellows of rubber or other suitable material of predetermined tension having one end anchored in the wall of the housing 30 and a disc 3'! closing port 35 secured to the other end of said bellows 36. A small orifice 38 provides a vent through the disc 31, permitting the pressure of the suit to be transmitted to the pressure chamber 39. Exhaust ports 40, 40 permit gas in the suit to escape when the pressure within the suit exceeds that of the predetermined altitude such as 30,000 feet by said suit pressure being greater than that in the chamber 39 acting on the disc 31 to move same away from the port 35.
In use the desired pressure of the suit is determined and the oxygen regulator of the aircraft is set in the conventional manner. Assuming said pressure to be that attained at 30,000 feet,
venturi l8 creates a negative pressure around the port 25 which draws air in through the ports 2|, 2i which mixes with the supply of oxygen gas to bring the flow up to the necessary minimum of 100 liters per minute to the aviator. The evacuated bellows 22 controlling the valve 24 reacts to atmospheric pressure and will expand with the increase of altitude until at the predetermined pressure, such as that of 30,000 feet, the valve will be entirely closed and the back pressure valve 26 will move tightly against the port 25 preventing any leak of oxygen. The gradual closing of the valve 24 also acts to gradually reduce the amount of air from the atmosphere that is mixed with the oxygen gas as the value of said air decreases with the increased altitude and the density of the oxy-' gen becomes correspondingly lower so that the necessary minimum of liters per minute to the aviator is maintained.
In the event of an emergency necessitating abandonment of the aircraft at high altitudes, the aviator may disconnect the connections 5, 5 and jump from the aircraft in the usual manner. The suit will be immediately sealed against loss of pressure and as the aviator passes down to levels of atmosphere below 30,000 feet without exposing himself to the extreme colds of the high altitude, thepressure 0f the oxygen stored within the suit will be maintained and the use of a conventional bail out bottle will provide breathing oxygen during the rapid descent to the lower altitudes. As the aviator passes into lower altitude levels, a suitable pressure sensitive check valve 4| permits air to be drawn into the suit in an amount in accordance with the atmospheric pressure.
The embodiments of the invention herein shown and described are to be regarded as illustratlve only, and it is to be understood that the invention is susceptible to variation, modification, and change within the scope of the appended claims.
1. An automatic pressure control system for high altitude flying comprising a pressure suit, a source of oxygen supply having a constant preregulated pressure flow, means for automatically regulating said pressure flow including a differential pressure responsive actuating means in onposing fluid pressure communication with the source of oxygen supply and the pressure suit, and means mounted in said pressure suit for regulating the pressure within said pressure suit in accordance with the various altitudes and to maintain a constant pressure at a preselected altitude in altitudes higher than the preselected altitude whereby the flow of oxygen through the pressure suit is controlled in accordance with the differential pressure acting on said pressure responsive actuating means by pressure in said pressure suit as determined by the suit pressure regulating means and the oxygen supply pressure to sufficiently supply oxygen to a wearer of the pressure suit in all altitudes.
2. In an automatic pressure controlling system for high altitude flying comprising a pressure suit, :BHSIiUICG of oxygen supply DI'OVidiIIgHBLtfiDiW face to the pressure of "the-pressure suit and on the" opposmg surface a to theupnessure of the incoming oxygen, saiddiaphragmhaving a pressure difierential means exerting pressure on one surface and means on the opposing"surface in operating connection with means for controlling flow of oxygen into said pressure regulator, a restricted nozzle through which the flow of oxygen from said regulator is limited, a venturi through which said oxygen passes, a port in said regulator within the negative pressure area created by said venturi through which air from the surrounding atmosphere passes, atmospheric pressure sensitive means controlling the flow of air into the oxygen stream through said ports, means for preventing the escape of oxygen through said port, and atmospheric pressure sensitive means mounted in said suit for controlling the pressure of said pressure suit and said one surface of the pressure regulator diaphragm in accordance with the available atmospheric pressure, the atmospheric pressure sensitive means maintaining a constant preselected pressure after attaining a predetermined altitude.
3. In an automatic pressure controlling system for high altitude flying comprising a pressure suit, means for regulating the flow of oxygen at a predetermined pressure from a source of supply to said suit by difierential pressure operating means being subjected to opposing pressure from the oxygen source and the pressure suit, means for dilution of said oxygen with air from the free atmosphere in quantities determined by the respective altitude, means for regulating the pressure within said suit comprising a housing mounted in the wall of said suit, an atmospheric pressure sensitive spring loaded evacuated bellows mounted in said housing, a port in said housing leading to the free atmosphere, a valve mounted on said bellows controlling said port, a port leading from said suit to the pressure chamber formed by said housing, a flexible bellows anchored at one end to the walls of said housing and having a valve at the other end controlling said port, a relatively small vent through said valve permitting the pressure of the suit to be transmitted to the pressure chamber, a series of exhaust apertures in said housing permitting gas from the suit to escape to the free atmosphere when the predetermined pressure is exceeded.
4. An automatic pressure control system for high altitude flying comprising a pressure suit, a source of oxygen supply having a constant preregulated pressure flow, valve means for automatically regulating the pressure flow including differential pressure responsive valve actuating means in opposing fluid pressure communication with the source of oxygen supply and the pressure suit, means for diluting the oxygen with air from the free atmosphere proportional to the altitude, and pressure regulating valve means in the pressure suit for regulating the pressure in the pressure suit in accordance with the various altitudes and to maintain a constant pressure at a reselected altitude in altitudes higher than the preselected altitude whereby the pressure in the pressure suit effects operation of the first mentioned valve means together with the pressure of the oxygen source to control the oxygen flow into the pressure suit in various altitudes sufiiing means for automaticallycontrolling said firstmentionedameans, said difierential pressure responsive actuating means connected in fluid pressure opposing relation with said oxygen supply source and said pressure suit for actuating said first mentioned means in accordance with oxygen demand as determined by available oxygen supply pressure and suit demand pressure, dilution valve means arranged between said first mentioned means and said pressure suit for dilutin the oxygen with air from the free atmosphere in proper varying amounts in relation to the various altitudes, relief valve means mounted in said pressure suit for regulating the pressure within said pressure suit in accordance with the various altitudes and adapted to maintain said pressure constant at that of a preselected altitude in altitudes higher than the preselected altitude and to remain closed in the absence of oxygen being admitted to said pressure suit, and a check valve mounted in said pressure suit adapted to permit the inflow of air from the free atmosphere at altitudes having sufficient atmospheric pressure to permit atmospheric breathing when no oxygen is being admitted to said pressure suit and said relief valve means is closed whereby the air in said pressure suit contains suflicient oxygen content for proper breathing at the various altitudes.
6. An automatic pressure control system for high altitude flying comprising a pressure suit in fluid connection with an oxygen supply having a, constant preregulated flow, a pressure flow regulator valve means in said fluid connection having a differential pressure regulator valve actuating diaphragm one surface of which is subject to the pressure of said pressure suit for producing an opening force on said regulator valve means in addition to a regulator valve opening biasing means and the other surface of which is subject to pressure of said oxygen supply for producing a closing bias on said regulator valve, a dilution valve means operatively arranged between said regulator valve means and said pressure suit for admitting free atmosphere to be drawn. into said fluid connection by the oxygen flow proportional to the altitude for maintaining sufficient oxygen concentration for a user in the various altitudes, an altitude controlled pressure relief valve means mounted in a wall of said pressure suit for regulating the pressure within said pressure suit in accordance with the various altitudes, said relief valve means being constructed and arranged to maintain the pressure in said pressure suit constant at or above a preselected altitude and to remain closed in the absence of oxygen being admitted to said pressure suit, means for preheating said oxygen or diluted oxygen prior to its entrance into said pressure suit to a temperature suitable for respiration of a wearer of said pressure suit, and a check valve mounted in said pressure suit adapted to permit the inflow of air from the free atmosphere at altitudes having suflicient atmospheric pressure to permit atmospheric breathing when no oxygen is being admitted to said pressure suit and said relief valve means is closed whereby 7 8 the airin said pressure suit cbntains suflicietit oxy- Number Name a h Date gen of a, temperature for proper respiratory action 2,307,393 Crawley. Jan. 5, 1943 at the various altitudes in ascent or descent. 2,404,020 Akerman W. July 16, 1946 HENRY BURNS 5 FOREIGN PATENTS m REFERENCES CITED Number Country Date h The following references are of record in the France 1932 file of this patent: I OTHER REFERENCES UNITED STATES PATENTS 10 Ser. No. 437,449, Richau (A. P. C.) pub. May 11,
Number 7 Name Date 1943' 2,269,500 Wildhack Jan. 13, 1942